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              What many would consider their worst nightmare has become a reality for Christopher Yuan. While attending dental school, he began living promiscuously as a homosexual and experimenting with illicit drugs. Within a few years, he was expelled from dental school, imprisoned for drug dealing and discovered that he was HIV positive.

              But God has turned his nightmare into an exciting and inspiring story of redemption, grace and transformation. Christopher has an understanding heart for and a desire to minister to those working through issues of sexuality and to those living with HIV/AIDS. He speaks locally and internationally to youth, on college campuses, in churches and in prisons.

              Christopher graduated from Moody Bible Institute in 2005 and Wheaton College Graduate School in 2007 with a Master of Arts in Biblical Exegesis and is currently pursuing a doctorate of ministry at Bethel Seminary. He now teaches at Moody while continuing his speaking ministry which has reached four continents around the world. Christopher has spoken at both Saddleback Church and Willow Creek Community Church in America and at many conferences including InterVarsity's Urbana and the Moody Pastors' Conference and Men's Conference. He is also featured in the award-winning documentary, "HOPE Positive: Surviving the Sentence of AIDS" and has co-authored with his mother, Out of a Far Country: A Gay Son's Journey to God, A Broken Mother's Search for Hope (forthcoming May 3, 2011 by WaterBrook Multnomah a division of Random House).

Friday, September 25, 2009

Is the goal to become "straight"?


I just received a note from someone with a great question regarding my "Gay Gene?" post from Oct 2007. He was confused that Christian groups believe that "homosexuals can become straight through prayer and counseling." Unfortunately for many, it seems the goal is to become straight. But this is not what I believe and this, I believe, is not biblical. Below is my comment.

Thanks so much for your note but this is not what I believe.

You see Scripture is very clear about sex and what God has created it for. But the world has distorted this and this has even affected the Church.

The major misconception within the Church is that heterosexuality is what is normal and that this is what God has ordained. But when we look in Scripture, there are about seven times more references to adultery, fornication and lust - all sins associated with heterosexuality - when compared to homosexuality.

Now I'm not trying to justify homosexuality but I'm just proving a point that neither homosexuality or heterosexuality should be the goal for any Christian. Heterosexuality is too broad encompassing adultery, fornication and lust (which are all sins).

The goal for all Christians should be HOLY SEXUALITY.

God has clearly set out what holy sexuality means. God gives us two options for holy sexuality: if we are single, then abstinence and if we are married, then faithfulness (and God has very clearly proscribed marriage to be with a man and a woman).

Therefore, my goal has never been to become straight. Because if I become straight, then I would begin lusting after women (which is a sin) and I would still have to focus on holy sexuality. My goal is holiness.

God says, "Be holy for I am holy." He has never said, "Be heterosexual as I am heterosexual."

I know that God can completely take away any same-sex attractions that I have (He's God anyway!). But if He does, I will then struggle with something else - anger, pride, heterosexual lust, etc. As long as I'm on this side of glory, I will always struggle with temptations with sin.

So I may still have same-sex attractions, but God has broken the chains of the bondage that I was in. You see, CHANGE DOES NOT MEAN THE ABSENCE OF STRUGGLES, BUT CHANGE MEANS THE FREEDOM TO CHOOSE HOLINESS IN THE MIDST OF MY STRUGGLES.

So as one who has come out of homosexuality, I have not "become straight" but rather I am on my journey toward sanctification through joyous, holy living.


I hope that this gives some clarity. I have put much thought and study into this and would greatly welcome your thoughts. Blessing to you all!

33 Comments:

Blogger Brad Ogilvie/The William Penn House said...

Hi, Christopher - this is interesting and well said. Unfortunately, the complexity of what you are saying here rarely makes it into the pop-media discussion, and everything gets boiled down to a more black/white fight.

I think one of the other realities is that God also made us as biological beings with physical and emotional needs. For me, being separated from a 15 year marriage (to another man), being single and celibate at 47 is a lot different than it was at 27, both physically, emotionally and spiritually. (My ex/estranged, as an aside, struggles with depression because he truly believes he is condemned to hell for being gay; in his Mormon upbringing the message was not like what you are saying here - it was absolute that one must be heterosexual and married to be worthy).

I know that many people reject comparisons between gay rights and rights of African-Americans, but I think there are some pretty important similarities, and they have to do with Biblical authority. A major breakthrough in the American history with regards to abolition was in the 1700's when Quakers such as John Woolman started to say that if reason says that something like slavery is wrong, then it is wrong no matter what the Bible says (this at a time when the Bible was the main justification for an institution that otherwise had little other reasoning behind it). We face many of the same dilemmas now: the Bible may say condemning things about homosexuality, but reason says we should love our children, and not want them to take their lives because they think they are unworthy of something they cannot control. Plus, there are few in the "ex-gay" movement who stop at the level you do - many take it to the extreme of saying that even you are not worthy of rights, housing, employment and - for some - even of living because you are not heterosexual.

As a complete aside - have you done much talking about the need to address HIV/AIDS in the US? As you know, the evangelical community and many others see it as an African problem, but we are seeing very troubling trends here in the US. I'd love to talk with you about some opportunities to work together on this.

July 17, 2008 at 5:55 AM  
Blogger Christopher Yuan said...

Hey Brad:

It's great to hear from you, friend! I was told by the HIV/AIDS Ministries in the DuPage County that you had moved to DC and that you had separated with Lad. It is unfortunate that Lad was not able to know the true Jesus who loved us so much that He died for us - not wanting to leave us the way we are but redeeming us and transforming us! I am sure that it must have been very difficult. I pray that you are doing better now.

I greatly appreciate your perspective and comments. It truly is unfortunate when things get boiled down and confused in pop-media.

The thing with slavery and the Bible is that Scripture never commands that we should have slaves - it just speaks into the ANE and Greco-Roman historical contexts to state that if you have a slave... Scripture also has a very counter-cultural view of slavery which is much different than how we view slavery. Scripture commands slave owners to treat their slaves well. People during that time actually sold themselves into slavery - this was their way of claiming bankruptcy. So our view of slavery is very different than the biblical view of slavery.

In addition, even though the Bible was used to justify slavery (wrongly, I might add), it was Christians who were on the forefront of abolishing slavery and these courageous and godly people did interpret Scripture correctly!

In regards to HIV/AIDS in the US, I am totally with you regarding the paucity of ministries among the evangelical community. And I am trying to bring more awareness about this!

Thanks again for your comment! You are a great friend in the battle for HIV/AIDS rights. Please send me an email with your updated info (christopheryuan@gmailcom). God bless you and I'm praying for you.

Christopher Yuan

July 17, 2008 at 3:17 PM  
Blogger Douglas said...

FOR THE BIBLE TELLS ME SO

http://www.forthebibletellsmeso.org/index2.htm

Christopher, please get a copy of this DVD. It will only help you.

It was difficult to watch your video, seeing you and four father use flawed reasoning.

Gay or straight, we are all subject to the risks of pornography, drugs, and HIV.

1) The straight pornography business is 10 time bigger than the gay pornography business.
2) Gay or straight, we can be addicted to drugs. More straights are addicted to drugs than gays.
3) Gay or straight, we can be infected with HIV. Today, HIV infects more straights than gays.

Being gay or straight is not a choice, just like being black, white, or yellow. But choosing pornography is a choice. Choosing to take drugs is a choice. Choosing to be a drug dealer is a choice. Choosing casual sex, choosing not talk about and not practice safe sex with your partner(s), choosing not to ask your partner(s) to get tested, those are choices. Please take responsibility for your own actions.

Please do not associate gays with prono, drugs, HIV+. Majority of gays are in committed loving relationships volunteer their time to bring awareness of risks of HIV and Aids and Drugs.

Majority of gays/lesbians don't watch porno, don't take drugs, are not HIV+. I am gay, I don't watch porno, I don't take drugs, I not HIV+, I am healthy, I talk about and practice "safe-sex" with my partner. I get tested every year. I take take responsibility for my own actions.

To suggest that being straight, you won't watch prono, not take drugs, not be a drug dealer, not be HIV+, not have divorced parents, is ignorant.

If Porno is the issue, than say "No' to prono.
If Drug is the issue, than say "No" to drugs, a risk for both straights and gays.
If HIV/Aids is the issue, than bring awareness to it's risks, for both straights and gay.

Teach love, tolerance, equality, and embrace diversity.

God knows who you are. God bless.
Douglas

Hope you find the courage to read this, and allow this view to be posted on your blog.

July 30, 2008 at 11:51 PM  
Blogger Douglas said...

LOVE

Dear Christopher,

I am also Chinese. I knew I was gay when I was 13 year old. I was the in closet in High School and College, not having a single gay friend. When I saw my straight friends getting serious in their relationships getting married, I knew I wanted that too. I wanted to find the person I love, find the person that loves for who I am, find my soul mate. In coming out, I reached out for support from an asian support group called GAPSN. My first meeting at GAPSN was "Coming Out" to parents. I came out to my parents after that meeting. My second meeting at GAPSN was "HIV and Aids", I went to this meeting with my boy friend, and we learned to talk about this uncomfortable issue together.

That was 20 years ago. I am happy to say today I've been in a loving committed relationship with my soul mate for 13 years. My soul mate is also Christian. My brother, sister, and mother are also Christian. My father is buddhist. My soul mate's family members are also Christians. Dreams do come true. I am getting married to my soul mate next weekend in CA. All of our families and friends have been very supportive and encouraging.

My sister and mother went your talk, and told me about you. I read the hand out that was passed out during your presentation. It was heart breaking to read that hand out called "Rebel w/o a cause", specifically the 2 page argument against "Same-sex marriage." Will you have happiness by taking away the wishes and dreams of million of committed loving same-sex couples? We know many same-sex couples who've been together for decades, where their life's dream is to be married one day. The path you have taking in your efforts in denying so many committed couples their hopes, dreams, and happiness, will that bring you happiness?

You are gay Chinese. I am also gay Chinese. We have taking very different paths in coming to terms with who we are. "I shall not bear false witness." With courage and honesty comes love and honesty.

Being HIV+ does not mean you have to give up your hopes and dreams. I pray to God that one day, you will find your soul mate, that you will have happiness.

God Bless,
Douglas

P.S.: I also do talks. I do talks for the younger generations of asian gays, like older generation have done for me when I was a young adult. The talks I do are about love, commitment, responsibilities, marriage, honesty, and courage. I know that through my talks, gays will be less likely to choose the path you have chosen of unsafe sex, drugs, drug dealing, and HIV. Gay or straight, we all want love, commitment and marriage.

July 31, 2008 at 10:12 AM  
Blogger Brad said...

Hi, Chris; thanks again for the thoughtful comments. I still struggle with the notion of Biblical authority. With so many interpretations, reinterpretations, re-evaluations, disagreements and even fights between (or on behalf of) learned religious folks, plus the countless examples of people exploiting others through the exercise of their authority, it's always a question for me. I know many people within the Christian community (in Wheaton, in particular) who are in the active process of transforming their interpretations in relation to homosexuality. I would also guess that if we were to turn the clock back, many supporters of slavery would find a way to interpret the Biblical authority not to be a commandment to have slaves, but also not to go to the other end of the spectrum to say that slavery is wrong. (as an aside, Quakers - who had been persecuted for challenging church authority - were at the forefront of the abolition movement, again challenging authority both in the religious community and in politics).

Stay in touch. Let's get together on one of my trips back. I'll be in touch about some stuff we will be doing with First Pres/Glen Ellyn, HIV and World Vision in mid-September

Brad

July 31, 2008 at 11:15 AM  
Blogger Christopher Yuan said...

Dear Douglas:

Thanks so much for your comment. I am aware of the DVD, "For the Bible Tells Me So" and know all the attempts to try to argue away the clear teachings of Scripture. But after studying four years of Greek and four years of Hebrew, the Bible is very clear that Jesus said, "If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and follow me" (Mark 8:34). Being a Christian means that we to become a "new creation" (2 Cor 5:17) which means that redemption, transformation and change is available to the person who has homosexual feelings just as it is available to the person who has heterosexual feelings! We all must be changed!

You said that my father and I used flawed reasoning but you must not have listened well to what I said. I NEVER said that porn, drugs or HIV is only found in the gay community. I was simply telling my story.

I do agree that NOBODY EVER CHOOSES to have homosexual feelings just as nobody ever chooses to have the desire to lust after somebody or to have the desire to look at pornography. Also, nobody every desires to become a drug addict.

HOWEVER, I DID CHOSE TO HAVE SEX WITH A MAN just as I chose to DO drugs - just as I chose to SELL drugs - just as I chose to LOOK at pornography. I agree with you that we must take responsibility of our own actions.

Actually, your logic does not follow (non sequitur). Just because homosexual feelings are not chosen does not make it the same as being black, white or yellow. I am Chinese and I can never change. But I used to identify myself as gay, and now I no longer do. Read my recent post on being born gay.

I did not and do not associate homosexuality with porn, drugs or HIV. Did I ever say that in my video? I was just telling my life story as it happened. In your push for tolerance, must you be intolerant of my life story?

I would suggest that you watch my video again and see that God loves us all and desires us to be in a loving relationship with Him - if we only surrender!

Praying for you, Douglas!

August 1, 2008 at 2:09 AM  
Blogger Christopher Yuan said...

Douglas:

I am glad that your mother and sister went to hear me speak and only wish that you could have as well. Once again, you have misunderstood my message. I never said that being HIV+ means that I have given up my hopes and dreams. But rather, I have more hopes and dreams through Christ than ever before.

You say that your partner is a Christian (I don't believe you said that you are). I pray that you and your partner will pursue Christ and see that following Christ is an act of surrender. Read my post on "Gay Christian" as it is an inconsistency of beliefs.

I do not believe that all gay or straight people desire marriage. Must I remind you that there are many people who live their lives as single people? Are they lesser people? Do you think that you are better than people who are single? I do not believe that we should pursue either singleness or marriage. But as Paul tells us to be content whether we're married or single (which by the way, marriage has always been defined by God and in history to be between a man and a woman).

Still praying for you, Douglas.

August 1, 2008 at 2:22 AM  
Blogger Christopher Yuan said...

Hey Brad:

Thanks for your thoughts again! You are right that often the turning point boils down to how people stand on Biblical authority. Let's do keep in touch! Please send me your info at christopheryuan@gmail.com. Blessings to you, brother!

Christopher

August 1, 2008 at 2:26 AM  
Blogger Andrew Kenny said...

I got your artcle through the website of my good friend George Verwer. As an evangelist I have some friends who are homosexual so your testimony was a great encouragement to me to continue reaching out to them. I also use the little Gideon New Testaments a lot: often having one in my jacket pocket.

Dear brother I thank God for the grace He has showed to you, along with much wisdom. I know He has given you that wisdom as your recognise you will never be out of the battle until you pass into glory.

In the mean time, serve God, preach the gospel to the poor and broken hearted, watch and pray and bring Him glory.
Your brother in Jesus
Andrew

August 2, 2008 at 2:30 PM  
Blogger Christopher Yuan said...

Hey Andrew:

Thanks for your words of encouragement! George is truly a wonderful man! Keep pressing on and faithfully show the love of Christ to your homosexual friends and pray that one day they'll surrender their lives to Christ!

Christopher

August 2, 2008 at 3:40 PM  
Blogger Douglas said...

Love, Respect, Courage, and Honesty.

Dear Christopher,

I went to a Christian grade school, and have been reading the Bible since I was 6 years old. I used to debate/argue/quote specific verses just like you do during my teenage and young adult years with friends and family. I've come to realize with 35 years of studying the Bible, that the Bible is for all of us. The way you read it is different from the way I read it. Some may claim to be experts, and feel good about themselves in showing their expertise. I went through that as well. I have come to realize I am only an expert for myself on the way I read it for myself.

"Gay Christian as it is an inconsistency of beliefs", that is only the way you read it. The way I read it, no where does the Bible say that. "Marriage has always been defined by God and in history to be between a man and a woman", that is only the way you read it. The way I read it, no where does the Bible say that. I respect your view, and I hope you respect mine. I don't go around telling straights to be gay just because I am gay, or imposing the way I read the bible on others. "The Bible is for all of us, gay, straight, lesbian, bisexual, transexual, black, white, yellow, male, female. Read it for yourself, with honesty, be true to yourself." My soul mate has been going to church since he was 6 years old. He's been studying the Bible for 40 years, and feels the same. My mother, brothers and sisters, Christians all their life, older and much more experienced feel the same as well. My friends who have been Christians all their life also feel the same.

Christopher, yes you can chose to be "single", as you have the right to make all the choices in your life. I respect that, and that is your life. For me, I believe that a "single" life is a life of loneliness. My relationship with my soul mate makes me complete. I cannot image living without him. I care whole heartedly for him. He cares whole heartedly for me. It is wonderful. Therefore, I do not wish a "single" life for anyone.

I have a loving committed relationship with my soul mate. God supports our relationship. God honors our relationship. God bless our relationship always. Marriage has always been defined by God as the love and commitment between two adult human beings. God is the God of love, equality, justice, not of fear and exclusion. God support the freedom to marry.

My mother and my sister left your talk early. My sister said, "They are using him to promote Prop. 8 and I don't agree with it." My mother said, "Chris never felt the love and commitment of another person. God bless him."

God Bless,
Douglas

August 3, 2008 at 9:51 AM  
Blogger Christopher Yuan said...

Douglas:

I try not to simply read the Bible but live it. You may believe that there may be a multiplicity of "correct" interpretations but I believe that there is one and although I don't claim that I am the one, but I continue to seek God's heart since He is the ultimate author of Scripture.

Please show me ONE VERSE where God condones homosexuality.

Please show me ONE VERSE where marriage is defined as anything else than a man and a woman.

You say you read it differently. I would love to see where you "read" these things.

Going to church, reading/studying the Bible and experience does not give anyone authority with Scripture. The only authority is the Holy Spirit.

I am sorry that you feel that being "single" is a life of loneliness. You must not have "read" those parts of Scripture where Paul encourages Christians to celebrate singleness (I won't quote anymore verse - don't want to offend you - but if you need references to "read" just tell me).

Please show me where in the Bible you "read" that marriage is defined as "love and commitment between two adult human beings."

If you can even show me from the above three comments, one verse - I would reconsider.

Your mother is sorely wrong that I never felt love and commitment from another person - this sounds quite judgmental and completely missing the Gospel.

I am loved more purely and more perfectly and more unconditionally than I have ever before - and this is by my loving Creator and God. Unfortunately many people don't have this AND THEREFORE FEEL LONELY!!!

I will be praying for you that God will fill your lonely and empty void that can only be filled by God.

Fervently praying for you,

Christopher

August 5, 2008 at 12:18 AM  
Blogger Douglas said...

Is Change Possible?

Dear Christopher,

"If Christians do not change, Christians are killed in Iraq." "Is Change possible?" that is the question Muslim extremists are asking.

Why do you think one million Christians have been murdered in Iraq? Is it because "Iraq Christian is inconsistent with their religious beliefs." Their mission is to show "There is no such thing as Iraqi Christians” like “There is not such thing at Gay Christians.” They don't want Iraqi Christians to be married and to have children. Entire families are killed including children. This is what happens when religious beliefs are used to judge others.

We are being killed just because we are Gay. We are being killed just because we are Christians. How do you think this started, Christopher? Perhaps, someone starting by saying "Is change possible for Iraqi Christians?"

Christopher, why do you use your own beliefs to judge me? I have not done anything to harm you. Why do you said it's wrong for me to loving my soul mate? Why do you say "Gay Christian as it is an inconsistency of beliefs?" How is this different from Muslim extremist who say and believe "God thinks Christians are wrong." How did this start, and where will it end?

I have to be careful of what I say in parts of this world we live in. I am careful not to say I am a Christian. I have to be careful of what I say in parts of this world we live in. I am careful not to say I am Gay . Can I not be Christian because others force me not be? Can I not be gay because others force be not to be? I can pretend not to be Christian, I can pretend not to be gay, but deep down inside, I am Christian, I am Gay, always.

How is your mission different Christopher? When you want to say Gays are wrong, please think of the one million Iraqi Christians that have been murdered. Please do ask why Iraqi Christian were told they are wrong.

I read the Bible for myself, without judging others, without being an expert to others, without believing that my beliefs are superior. I read the Bible to include all human begins regardless of race, gender, disabilities, and sexual orientation with love and compassion. God teach me love, compassion, understanding, justice, equality, respect, not to fear, hate, and exclude. God teach me to listen to others whole heartedly without judgment, and to embrace diversity.

CHANGE SHOULD NOT BE ABOUT WANTING OTHERS TO CHANGE ACCORDING TO OUR OWN BELIEFS. CHANGE SHOULD BE ABOUT CHANGING OUR OWN ATTITUDES TOWARD OTHERS WHO ARE DIFFERENT FROM US, WHO HAVE DIFFERENT BELIEFS THAN OURS. CHANGE SHOULD BE ABOUT OURSELVES EMBRACING DIFFERENCES, EMBRACING DIVERSITY. THAT IS WHAT GOD TEACH US.

YES, "CHANGE IS POSSIBLE!"
God Bless,
Douglas

http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2007/11/29/60minutes/main3553612.shtml

"There's no comparison between Iraq now and [under Saddam]," says White. "Things are the most difficult they have ever been for Christians probably ever in history," he tells Pelley, referring to the nearly 2,000 years of Christian history in the area. That's because White estimates that 90 percent of Iraq's Christians, once thought to number over a million, have either fled or have been murdered by Islamic extremists during the religious civil war.

That includes his own church leaders and most of the men of his parish. "They are mainly killed. Some are kidnapped," says White. "Here in this church, all of my leadership were originally taken and killed." Their bodies were never recovered. "This is one of the problems. I regularly do funerals here, but it’s not easy to get the bodies," White tells Pelley.

It all started after the invasion, says a young Christian who did not want to be identified. "[Muslim extremists] were telling us that Christians were against Islam, that we’re infidels, that women shouldn’t drive and that a woman who doesn’t wear a head scarf should get her head cut off," he says. "I thought, 'What are we, going back to the Middle Ages?'"

It’s all happening because religion can go wrong, says White. "When religion goes wrong, it kills others. [Islam] has [gone wrong] and in the past, Christianity has gone wrong," he says.

August 6, 2008 at 1:18 AM  
Blogger Douglas said...

Officially Married!

Dear Christopher,

My soul mate and I are officially married under California law today. We've been together for 12 years, and this a dream come true for both of us.

We are both Christians, and have been since childhood. During our ceremony, we thanked God for the love he has shown us. And we promised God, that we will love each through sickness and health.

It is heart breaking to know that the very same people who can take away our marriage are Christians by using Prop. 8.

We hear God's voice. "They may try to take away your marriage, but they will never take away your love and commitment for each other."

We are "Soul Mates"
Douglas

August 7, 2008 at 9:12 AM  
Blogger Christopher Yuan said...

Douglas:

I posted your message on Iraq only to show to others how irrelevant your thoughts are - and I don't respond to nonsense. Getting back to the point, you have not answered my previous questions.

Christopher

August 8, 2008 at 1:06 AM  
Blogger Douglas said...

Christopher, I am surprised you as a Christian think that Gays and Christians being killed because of prejudice is irrelevant.

What can be done to stop the hatred?

Douglas

Iraqi Christian Priest Killed in Baghdad
By VOA News
05 April 2008

Iraqi police say an Assyrian Orthodox priest has been killed in a drive-by shooting in Baghdad - the latest attack on Iraq's Christian minority.

Sources say Youssef Adel was leaving his house in central Baghdad when a group of men in a speeding car opened fire Saturday as they drove past.

Pope Benedict expressed sorrow over the killing. In a telegram, he said he prayed that the Iraqi people find peace to build a tolerant society.

Christians have come under frequent attack in Iraq in recent months. The body of Archbishop Paulos Faraj Rahho, an Iraqi Chaldean Catholic, was found last month in Mosul, days after he was kidnapped.


Religious hatred is a matter of life and death
GODLESS WORLD / We can't ignore fundamentalists' hateful rhetoric

Krishna Rau / Xtra.ca / Thursday, August 07, 2008


For gays and lesbians, religious hatred is literally a matter of life and death. And it's becoming rapidly apparent that the deadly consequences of such biblically motivated homophobia are not restricted to Africa or Asia. Queers in North America are losing their lives because of such vitriol.

Even churches that attempt to be open to queers are facing attacks, not only with heated rhetoric, but with actual bullets.

The latest instance occurred Jul 27 in Knoxville, Tennessee when a shooter opened fire on people at the gay-friendly Tennessee Valley Unitarian Universalist Church, killing two people and injuring seven others. Jim D Adkisson would have killed many more had not members of the congregation — who were gathered for a children's production of Annie — not tackled him.

The church, according to Tennessee's News Sentinel newspaper, "has a 'gays welcome' sign and regularly runs announcements about meetings of the Parents, Friends and Family of Lesbians and Gays meetings at the church.

"The church's website states that it has worked for 'desegregation, racial harmony, fair wages, women's rights and gay rights' since the 1950s. Current ministries involve emergency aid for the needy, school tutoring and support for the homeless, as well as a café that provides a gathering place for gay and lesbian high-schoolers."

Police say Adkisson — who apparently planned to be killed by police — left a letter targetting the beliefs of the church. The Knoxville police chief told the paper the letter expressed his "hatred of the liberal movement. Liberals in general, as well as gays."

So for anyone who thinks that the hateful rhetoric spewed by fundamentalists — about homosexuality being a sin and an abomination and about following God's word — should be ignored, remember what happened in Knoxville.

August 10, 2008 at 5:39 PM  
Blogger rayray said...

Hi Christopher,
Insightful comments, but I am hurting as well because as I read I hear the struggle, the need for respect and acceptance as well as being in a state of spiritual blindness. Don't lose heart in what you are doing. May your compass always be the Word of the living God, not pop culture.

I would like to quote some truths that Kay Arthur shared which has continued to impact my life and I hope those who will read them.

"So many who went on to be mightily used of God really wrestled with their sin. There was a sense of eternity-and gravity of facing a holy God-that's missing today in our teaching and evangelism. We're so quick to try to get people into heaven that I think many times we go after a profession of faith rather than allowing the Holy Spirit to bring...

conviction of sin because they have not believed on Jesus.
conviction of righteousness and their great need for it, for without His righteousness they will miss heaven.

We fail to let people grapple with their total inability to save themselves through their good deeds, religious sacraments, and impotent wrestling with fleshly desires.

We fail to allow them to be convicted of judgment. We want to present the blessings of belonging but fail to let them know the consequences of rejecting.

The prince of this world can be cast out; people can move from death to life, from the power of Satan to the kingdom of God. But if they don't know where they are, if they don't recognize the danger lying before them beyond death's door, why should they believe? or see a need to change? or run? or flee for their lives? We're in such a hurry to "get them saved"(as if we ourselves could save them) that we don't wait for God to shine His light into the darkness of their souls. The great Shepherd of the sheep is not going to lose one single lamb that He wants in His fold (John 10:27-30)."
So, as for me, I say to you continue to speak His truth in love and with grace as you stand firm in this progressively amoral age. His message is not popular, but you have a biblical mandate to 'occupy until He come'. Cheering you on.

August 12, 2008 at 12:36 AM  
Blogger Douglas said...

God will judge us.

Dear Christopher,

Christian conseratives persecuting Gays. Musilum extremist persecuting Christians.

Please do not hesitate to post my comments. I cannot judge you, nor can you judge me. Only God can judge us.

Please show the courage to discuss points of view different yours. Only through that do we find the courage to love people who are different from us, and respect people who have different points of view.

God Bless,
Douglas

August 12, 2008 at 5:24 PM  
Blogger Leon said...

Dear Douglas:

I have been following the communication between you and Christopher. I was extremely perplexed by two of your statements about being "married".

-- " My soul mate and I are officially married under California law today."
-- " We are both Christians, and have been since childhood."

I can not help, but wondering how both of you will answer these following questions.

First,after your so called marriage 'being legal" in California, is it make right in the eye of God? since abortion is legal in America, is the abortion right in the eye of God?

Second, do you depend on the interpretations of the law of the land, rather than the Biblical Scriptures, to judge your own actions and behaviors? In other words, do you judge yourself, or let God be the Judge?

Third, what is the difference between soul mate and sexual partner in the eyes of God?

I know for sure that we will have different answers for the above questions. Therefore it will be counter-productive for any further communications, unless we both worship the same God, and especially the same Jesus Christ. Since you claim that you are a Christian, that is , a follower of Jesus Christ. Therefore, we must talk about the "same" Jesus Christ.

I will tell you who is "my" Jesus Christ first. Than, I want you to tell me who is "your" Jesus Christ.

Before He was crucified, he prayed to His Heavenly Father, "Abba, Father," he said, "everything is possible for you. Take this cup from me. Yet not what I will, but what you will." He always did what pleases His Heavenly Father.

That is "my" Jesus. Actually, "my" Jesus is the Jesus of the Bible.

So, please tell me "your" Jesus and where you find this Jesus in Scripture? Please seek out the true Jesus and not your own made up Jesus. You basically want Christ without the Cross - this is not the true Jesus.

To God be the glory (not to "me" be the glory)

Leon

August 12, 2008 at 11:48 PM  
Blogger Christopher Yuan said...

Douglas:

Let me point out your inconsistencies with these three comments:

First, you equate yourself as a gay Christian with an Iraqi Christian. Please tell me how this is even remotely similar. You may say, "I was born gay!" But I would like to see just one shred of evidence that conclusively states that any person is born gay. You may say, "As long as I remember, I was different!" But this is as unscientific as someone stating, "As long as I remember, I was walking - so therefore, I must have been born walking!"

Second, I do not see any correlation between Muslims killing Christians, and Christians persecuting gays. The last time I checked, many Muslim clerics with large followings continue to urge Muslims to wage Jihad upon the Christian West while I have not heard a single Christian leader urging anyone to kill homosexuals (the killing in Knoxville is an even that must be condemned - but it is isolated and not organized or supported by any church - unlike the Muslim terrorists). It is amazing to see how you completely misrepresent me (see all your comments above) because I am completely against any hatred and violence toward homosexuals (see my post on Homophobia at christopheryuan.blogspot.com/2007/05/i-am-against-homophobia.html.

Third, if you equate Christians "persecuting" gays with Muslims killing Christians, then how do you define "persecuting"? If you say that "persecuting" is Christians saying that gays are incorrect or that we disagree with your views or that gays are sinners (which by the way, Scripture says that we are all sinners) - then wouldn't what you are doing the same as "persecuting"? And then wouldn't what you are doing with me be the same as the actions of a Muslim extremist? Disagreeing with someone or telling someone that they are wrong or even a sinner IS NOT "PERSECUTING" or equivalent to being a Muslim terrorist - BECAUSE THEN JESUS CHRIST WOULD BE EQUIVALENT TO A MUSLIM TERRORIST!!! Jesus pointed out people's sins and urged them to "sin no more." This is what we as Christians should be doing. We must acknowledge and help point out sin in others (while being open to others pointing out our own sins) with love and compassion and with the goal of restoring them. THIS IS WHAT I WANT THE CHURCH TO DO - AND THAT IS WHAT I FEEL IS MY CALLING BECAUSE I BELIEVE THAT THE CHURCH OF JESUS CHRIST HAS HONESTLY NOT DONE A GOOD JOB OF THIS LATELY. But thankfully, God is patient with us imperfect people and I do see improvement and hope within the Church.

I will continue to pray for you. Also know that Christians who have made a sincere confession of faith must accompany it with a transformed life.

Praying for redemption and daily transformation in you and me...

Christopher (your Chinese brother)

August 13, 2008 at 12:54 AM  
Blogger Myrto Theocharous said...

I was so blessed by these thoughts Christopher. Thank you and may God continue to use you!

August 17, 2008 at 2:35 PM  
Blogger So I Was Thinking said...

Christopher,

I've been on your site before, but this is the first time I have really delved into your blog entries. This post was fascinating. Like most people, especially "straight" conservative Christians, I have only considered sexuality in terms of "gay" or "straight", but your emphasis on holy sexuality really grabbed my attention. I think that Christians who (rightly, I think) hold the view that the homosexual lifestyle is unbiblical, completely miss the splinter/plank problem their rather vehement and vocal judgments raise. I believe we have forsaken notions of holiness in favor of vociferously pronouncing moral judgment and condemnation, blinded to our own shortcomings. Thanks for the insight.

March 16, 2009 at 6:48 PM  
Blogger Christopher Yuan said...

Dear "So I Was Thinking" or Mark:

Thanks for your words of encouragement. We must live by Jesus' example who is able to show love and compassion and patience toward those who have sinned but also desire that they "Go and sin no more."

Unfortunately, those who are gay affirming believe that "love" means not only affirming a person but affirming their actions. This is completely unbiblical.

But on the other extreme are some Christians who hold very firmly regarding sin but show little or no compassion. And yet God calls us to "speak truth in love" and that it's "God's kindness that leads us to repentance" (Rom 2:4).

Have a blessed day!

Christopher

April 3, 2009 at 4:49 PM  
Blogger joann said...

christopher:

thank you so much for sharing your story! praise God that He has, and is, transforming your life! what an amazing testimony to the power of the living God!

i have a lot of respect for you and can see that God has given you much wisdom. not only do you understand the bible extremely well, but you also have a clear understanding of what it is to be gay.

i think this is such a complex issue to deal with because those of us who are not gay do not understand what a gay person goes through in this area - the struggles, feelings, and choices.

although we face struggles of our own, society "classifies" sins and often times we are not even aware that our own struggles with other areas of self-control are sin as well. even choosing unhealthy things like overeating, too much salt/ sugar/ fat, etc. have consequences of disease, high blood pressure, etc.

thank you for your insight on what change really is. so often we just want the problem to go away. but i guess the true test is when we rely on God to help us to consistently choose Him.

how gracious and patient is the God we serve! none of us deserve Him.

have you ever spoken in public schools before? and if so, what topics have you spoken about?

thank you again for your transparency and your message of hope.

blessings,
joann

June 19, 2009 at 3:53 AM  
Blogger Christopher Yuan said...

Dear Joann:

Thanks for your words of encouragement. I have spoken in public school on the topic of sexuality, addictions, prison, faith, etc. Email me at christopheryuan@gmail.com if you'd like more information. I'd like to add you to my email list as well, so please email me your email address.

Christopher

July 24, 2009 at 6:19 PM  
Blogger Jonatan said...

Dear Christopher,

Honestly, finding your blog and reading through your different posts has been such an inspiration in my life. Thank you for your service and your help to those of us that are also fighting the good fight and keeping the faith!

I also struggle with same-sex attractions. As someone who was raised in a Christian household, this confusion has practically stamped my life to become a huge self-pitty party- until just recently.

3 years ago, there were many different situations I had experienced while in school that led me to a TRUE examination of my walk with Christ (or lack thereof). Thanks to Godly relationships that were put in my path, and because of God's grace, I was saved. The message of the Cross of Christ clicked. I understood my redemption and the idea of atonement for ALL my sins. I'm 22 now and I no longer spend countless days and nights praying that God would transform me into a heterosexual. Though I've seen that this transformation has been the case in many testimonies of others, I have realized that my obsession with trying to make myself 'straight' had become in idol in my heart, and I was cherishing IT more than I was Christ. Oh how much I thank God for his grace and opening my eyes to TRULY find my satisfaction in HIM AND HIM ONLY!

Lately I've been reading through John Piper's "Don't Waste Your Life" and one of my favorite chapters has been on magnifying Christ through pain and death. Here is a portion I read that had me going CRAZY WITH JOY in my bedroom at 2am!! (Hope it isn't too long...)

"Living to magnify Christ is costly. This is not surprising. He was crucified. He was treated like a devil, And he calls us to follow him. "If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me" (Mark 8:34)....But suffering with Jesus on the calvary road of love is not merely the result of magnifying Christ; it is also the means. He is made supreme when we are so satisfied in him that we can "let goods and kindred go, this mortal life also" and suffer for the sake of love. His beauty shines more brightly when treasured above health and wealth and LIFE ITSELF. Jesus knew this. He knew that suffering would be the path in this age for making him most visibly supreme. That is why he calls us to this. HE LOVES US. The normal Christian life is one that boasts only in the Cross-the blazing center of God's glory-and DOES IT WHILE BEARING THE CROSS. "Whoever does not bear his own cross and come after me cannot be my disciple" (Luke 14:27). Bearing the cross is the means by which we are increasingly liberated to boast in the cross. Suffering is God's design in this sin-soaked world. It punishes sin's guilt for those who do not believe in Christ. It breaks sin's power for those who take up their cross and follow Jesus. and because sin is the belittling of the all-satisfying glory of God, the suffering that breaks its power is a severe mercy. Whatever makes us more and more able to enjoy making much of God is a mercy. For there is no greater joy than joy in the greatness of God. And if we must suffer to see this and savor it most deeply, than suffering is a mercy. And Christ's call to take up your cross and join him on the calvary road is LOVE."

AMENNN!!!

I now thank God for deeming me adequate to serve Him in spite of this struggle. Thanks, Christopher, for your testimony and your ministry. I hope to meet you one day. And if not, we will see each other in eternal glory!

"...and may the Lord do what seems good to him." !

In Christ,

Jon

November 4, 2009 at 10:01 AM  
Blogger Christopher Yuan said...

Hey Jonatan:

Thanks for your words of encouragement! I really enjoy John Piper and he is right on regarding our need to bear the cross!

Email me at christopheryuan@gmail.com. I'd love to add you to my email list for my updates and prayers requests.

Have a great day in the Lord!

Christopher Yuan

November 4, 2009 at 11:53 PM  
Blogger Andi and Sheba Eicher said...

Dear Christopher and other dear friends who have commented already,

Thanks for your heart-felt and insightful comments. Reading through this stream of sharing has been refreshing and challenging.

I have been reading through Philippians this morning and was struck again by how the Holy Spirit - speaking through Paul - is confident that Jesus - who has begun a good work in us - will carry it through to completion. But at the same time, that we are urged to continue to 'work out our own salvation - with fear and trembling - because God is at work in us.' Paul underlines this by pointing to his own on-going work of being transformed - and encouraging us by stating that he can do 'all things' through Him (Jesus). What a hope we have in our lives - as we allow Jesus to cleanse us and purify us. Each day we are challenged with temptations and lusts - but each day we can be renewed because of the amazing, soul-cleansing, heart-shaping grace that our Lord Jesus Christ offers us.

Blessings to you all. Read the Word everyday - and put it into practice as dearly loved children (Eph. 5.1).

Love,

Andi and Sheba Eicher
Thane, India

November 9, 2009 at 8:55 PM  
Blogger Ray said...

Christopher,

Be encouraged!It's so sad to hear Douglas put hope in man's system. He's happy because he was able to get married, that happyness will soon change as the will law changes and it will no longer be legal to get married. I pray for him to find his hope in God not in his sexuality or the hope that the law is going to some day affirm his happyness.

March 29, 2011 at 12:12 AM  
Blogger Val Lee said...

We are called to judge in John 7:24. We are to judge according to righteousness, not appearance. We have to judge also, because Christians are not allowed to associate with so-called believers who are sexual immoral in any way, as well as any Christians who hold on to other sins; 1 Corinthians 5:9f. 1 Corinthians chapter 6 calls the church to judge so only righteousness reigns in a church. The lake of fire is reserved for the sexually immoral as 2 Corinthians 9-10 states. And verse 11 that follows states, true Christians are washed of these sins, and only by the blood of Christ.

Homosexuality destroys societies as Romans chapter 1 states. In the Old Testament the judgment was death for all homosexuals to rid the land of this sexual pervasion. We all fall short before we are saved. One day Jesus Christ who is all holiness, being pure, undefiled, separated from sinners, and higher than the heavens will rule the earth from Jerusalem in all holy chastity one day. There will be no homosexual sin or any type of promiscuity sin on the earth. They will be not be in heaven either. Praise God.

To be saved from homosexuality and all sin, one must be born again by the cleansing blood of Jesus Christ. He washes all our sins away so we do not justify any of them. (1 John 5:10-13)

March 17, 2012 at 5:32 PM  
Blogger beboptang said...

Hi Christopher,

I'm from Singapore and one of my pastors played your Saddleback video for our Chinese Youth Service today. Your testimony and the power of God's Word & Spirit really moved me to tears! I was also really impressed by your mum's tenacity. Wow! What a prayer warrior! I'm inspired to pray for my struggling friends with that kind of unceasing consistency, like a life-or-death petition!

I was particularly struck by your statement, "The opposite of homosexuality is not heterosexuality. The opposite of homosexuality is holiness". If you don't mind, I'm gonna use that statement ;)

I have a similar testimony to yours -- minus the drugs and jail. The Lord is indeed bringing me through a journey of pursuing purity & holiness, trusting in El Shaddai -- the Lord our sufficiency. I never thought that I would be able to live without my broken cisterns, which I mistakenly thought would fill my lonely nights. But by His strength, through His peace & joy, I am free from those chains & lies. His Word & His presence is so real and matchless! I find myself craving to read the Bible and to get alone with God! Me! Ms Activity-Queen, Ms I-don't-wanna-die-lonely!

Oh! To be facedown with the Lord, as He restores me with Isaiah 62 & 54; Psalm 1, 119, & 121.

Yes, you are right to say, that a transformed life is the evidence of everything we profess and confess. As our Lord Jesus said, out of the fullness of our hearts our mouth speaks.

Thank you for your obedience to walk the talk! We overcome the enemy by the blood of the Lamb and by our testimony!

The depth of our prayer lives and how much time we spend on our faces before our King, determines the spiritual authority we have in public -- even the devil knows that. So may the Lord bless you and your family with LOADS of rich prayer-closet-time (the only closet we should be in); may He continue to heal your body and protect you from the enemy.

Shalom,
Audrey.

April 1, 2012 at 11:57 AM  
Blogger Bradley Grim said...

Christopher I am thrilled that you came to know and love Jesus as your Saviour! I heartily agree that every believer should strive for holy sexuality. Homosexuality has such a stigma in the local churches. I accepted Christ as my Saviour at age 4 with my parents but then was introduced to a secret life of homosexual relations with an older cousin when I was 5. It's been a life long struggle. I've begged God for decades to remove the desires but His grace is sufficient. Thanks for reminding me that the goal is holy sexuality not heterosexuality.

April 6, 2014 at 1:58 PM  
Blogger Katie Rolfes said...

Hello Christopher,

I heard of you for the first time a couple Sunday's ago when our pastor did a sermon on Holy Relationships. Shortly after, I started my second year of college at a Christian-based university.

Many of the professors however are not teaching from Christian standpoint. Homosexuality is being pushed in almost every classroom. They aren't teaching it as a viewpoint, but as what is right. Anyone who disagrees is labeled as intolerant and a bigot... names that I'm used to.
This type of 'teaching' isn't unexpected at many colleges, but it is disturbing to me that it is being done at a Christian one.

Reading through your blog has given me so much encouragement, and insight. Thank you for what you do. Your passion for Christ is contagious (even if it's only through the web.)

Right now we're reading a common book throughout the campus that many find "praise-worthy" called "My Two Mom's" As I go to right my paper, I will be referencing you post about Holy Relationships and all that it encompasses, regardless of a person's sexual orientation.

I will be contacting some of the higher-ups at my campus and see if they can arrange for you to speak at some point. Many of the speakers that come push out or distort Christ, these are speakers that many instructors require students to go to for credit. Lord willing, I look forward to hearing you in person some day.

God Bless,
Katie

September 1, 2014 at 1:57 PM  

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